Monday, December 14, 2015

The Madman's Daughter

TITLE: The Madman's Daughter
AUTHOR: Megan Shepherd
RELEASE DATE: January 2013
PUBLISHER: Balzer + Bray
PAGES: 369 pages 
GENRE: Science Fiction
SERIES: #1 in The Madman's Daughter series (Book 2:Her Dark Curiosity, Book 3:A Cold Legacy)
: 4/5
APPROPRIATE AGE: grades 9-12

SUMMARY: Juliet's life was perfect until her father's medical experiments become outrageous and he is banished from London. Six years later, she is able to track him down to a remote island where he is free to continue his experimentation with human and animal genes. Juliet, at first, is thrilled with the reconnection with her father until she sees, firsthand, the consequences of his medical practices. But throughout her survival on the island, she begins to ask herself if she isn't a little mad as well. 

WHAT I LIKED: I liked that The Madman's Daughter follows H.G. Wells' story of The Island of Dr. Moreau so closely, while changing the perspective to the madman's daughter. Readers at this age won't be as familiar with the original and therefore won't expect the plot twists. The second book in the series, Her Dark Curiosity, follows the story of The Strange Case Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. At the time of this review, I had not read the first book in the series, A Cold Legacy, but from hints at the end of the story, I'm thinking it will have something to do with Frankenstein.

WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: All of the doctor's experiments, the combining of humans and animals left me with a whole lot of questions. How exactly do you create a human with animal traits without first a human specimen. Throughout the story, Dr. Moreau is collecting animal specimens, but only uses human blood to complete the experiment? I also had a hard time picturing these creatures in my mind. The character of Balthasar was a combination of a dog and bear, was covered in dark hair, but yet could pass on the streets of London as human? I find this difficult to believe. 

READALIKES: Libba Bray's A Terrible Beauty series, Kenneth Oppel's This Dark Endeavor 


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